Ben Gordon opens up about suicide attempt ‘ I thought about killing myself every single day’

Former NBA player Ben Gordon submitted an essay to The Players Tribune. In that essay he details the struggles he has with mental health. He also speaks to a failed suicide attempt.

In 2004 Gordon made himself eligible for the NBA draft after winning a national championship with the University of Connecticut. He was picked by the Chicago Bulls.

In 2005 Gordon won Sixth Man of the year as a rookie. His NBA career ended with the Charlotte Bobcats in 2017.

“There was a point in time where I thought about killing myself every single day for about six weeks.” Gordon wrote

He shared that in the season right after his last year in the league he would start having panic attacks.

Gordon details the feelings of despair and loss of identity he was plagued with daily. He shared that he felt as though he was in purgatory. Describing the feeling like a black cloak suffocating his soul.

When it became unbearable Gordon took matters into his own hands. “I took one of those heavyweight jump ropes — the thick rubber ones — and I tied it around my neck. Got a chair. And I hung myself, for real.” Gordon wrote.

He did not die in the attempt because in the midst of it he recognized that he wanted to live.

Gordon admits that this illness has been with him since he was a child. He was left wondering who created God since God created everything. He shared that it was a loop going on in his mind.

Gordon has since gone to therapy and appreciates being able to share his thoughts.

“It helped me work some things out. But more than anything, I think it helped me embrace the fact that — it’s like, Yo, B, you’re different. And that’s alright.” wrote Gordon

According to The National Institute of Minority Health and Health Disparities Among men aged 18–44 who had daily feelings of anxiety or depression, non-Hispanic Black and Hispanic men (26.4 percent) were less likely than non-Hispanic White men (45.4 percent) to have used mental health treatments.

The NIH also report that suicide is the third leading cause of death for African American males ages 15 to 24.

The national suicide hotline website is below.

suicidepreventionlifeline.org

For help with mental illness go to nami.org

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Former NFL running back Rashaan Salaam found dead at 42

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Rashaan Salaam – Photo Source: Screenshot Twitter: @Broncos

Former NFL running back Rashaan Salaam was found dead at a park in Boulder Colorado. He was 42.  Salaam won the coveted Heisman Trophy in 1994. He was a first round draft pick in 1995. Salaam was the 21st pick overall by the Bears. In his rookie year, Salaam rushed for 1,074 yards, becoming the youngest player in league history to rush for over 1,000 yards.

A police spokeswoman said the cause of death is still under investigation. Police have mentioned that there is no indication of foul play. Salaams mother Khalada told USA Today sports that they suspected suicide.

“They said they found a note and would share that with is when we get there.” Said Salaams mother.

Salaam was well loved in Colorado. Matt Russell who is currently the director of personnel for the Denver Broncos and a former teammate of Salaam at The University Of Colorado shared some of his thoughts.

“Rashaan was as dynamic off the field as he was on the field as a player. He was a fiercely loyal friend, someone who was always in your corner and had your back. He was the ultimate teammate and supportive of everyone in his locker room. If there was ever a guy who was going to get a personal foul for protecting someone on his team, Rashaan was that guy.

“Rashaan was the ultimate Buffalo and was so proud to be called a ‘Colorado Buffalo.’ We were part of the same recruiting class, what we called ‘nine deuce,’ the Class of 1992. On the field, Rashaan was the definition of a winner. It was important to him. He practiced hard, he played hard and he made our teams better. Rashaan and I laughed a lot after practices because we had so many battles and fights. Even when we last saw each other a few years ago at the CU Hall of Fame induction, we still shared those great memories and had a lot of laughs from our time together at Colorado.

“My heart goes out to Rashaan’s mother and his family. They have a lot to be proud of with the person that Rashaan was, the way he treated people and the friend he was to everyone he came across. He will be missed by so many, and I extend my deepest sympathies to Rashaan’s many friends and family.”

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